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Title: Keneshde Tells His Story

Source(s): The Navajo and Pueblo Silversmiths

Author(s): Keneshde (Author); John Adair (Author)

A Zuni silversmith tells how he got the first piece of turquoise when he was fifteen from a mine east of Santo Domingo.

When I was a boy about fifteen years old, I used to help Kwaisedemon, who was my grandfather, make silver. He was my father's father, and at that time he was an old man. It was hard work for him to pound out silver, so I used to do that for him. In r...

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Title: Zuni Religion and Philosophy

Source(s): Zuni: El Morro Past & Present

Author(s): Edmund J. Ladd (Author); David Grant Noble (Editor)

Description of Zuni philosophy.

All of Zuni life, from birth until death, revolves around rituals, ceremonies, special observations, and the crises of transition from one age or status to another. The Zuni believe that everyone carries within himself his (or her) own personal ̶...

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Title: Castañeda's History of the Expedition

Source(s): The Journey of Francisco Vasquez de Coronado 1540-1542; Coronado Cuarto Centennial Publications, 1540-1940

Author(s): Pedro de Castañeda (Author); George P. Hammond (Editor); Agapito Rey (Editor)

How the Zunis kill the negro Esteban at Cibola, and how Fray Marcos flees in flight.

CHAPTER III — How they killed the negro Esteban at Cíbola, and how Fray Marcos returned in flight. When Esteban got away from the said friars, he craved to gain honor and fame in everything and to be credited with the boldness and daring of dis...

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Title: Warriors: Navajo Code Talkers

Author(s): Kenji Kawano (Author); Thomas H. Begay (Author); Samuel Tom Holiday (Author)

A Navajo Code Talker remembers fighting with the Marines in the South Pacific during World War II.

Thomas H. Begay, Tsi’ najinii and Ashiihi Clans, was a member of the 5th Marine Division and saw combat on Hawai`i, Enewetak Atoll, Guam, Tinian, Saipan, and Iwo Jima. We were disciplined....I learned to survive combat. The first hour, I was wit...

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Title: Acoma

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

An introduction to the history and culture of the people of Acoma.

Tribal elders say that Acoma (sometimes spelled Akome, Acuo, Acuco, Ako and A’ku-me) means “a place that always was.” Archaeologists have found artifacts at digs on Acoma Mesa that speak of prehistoric times. Like its near neighbors Hopi and Zu...

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Title: The Bird Man

Source(s): Two Guadalupes: Hispanic Legends and Magic Tales from Northern New Mexico

Author(s): Traditional; Marta Weigle (Editor)

A traditional Spanish tale about a prince who became a bird and then a king.

Once upon a time there lived a king who had three sons. Now the first wife of the king had died and the king had married again. The stepmother of the three boys was very mean. She treated her stepsons very badly. One day she stood in the door of t...

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Title: Two Lives for Oñate

Author(s): Miguel Encinias (Author)

An excerpt from a novel about Juan de Oñate's campaign to conquer New Mexico in 1598-99.

On 12 January 1599, Zaldívar set out for Acoma with seventy soldiers and instructions to demand the delivery of those guilty for the attack on the Spaniards and, failing to achieve that, to wage relentless war and to take all of the inhabitants pris...

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Title: Uncle Tells a Story

Source(s): Writing the Southwest

Author(s): Simon Ortiz (Author); David King Dunaway (Editor); Sara L. Spurgeon (Editor)

Uncle Page talks about the last time he went hunting.

“Uncle, tell us a story,” people would say, “Tell us about the time you went to the mountains to hunt.” And the old man, Page, would say, “Well, I don’t really want to; I don’t have any stories.” “Please, Uncle,” they would ...

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Title: Wheat-Sprout

Source(s): Flaming Arrow’s People by an Acoma Indian

Author(s): James Paytiamo (Author)

James Paytiamo explains why his mother named him "Wheat-Sprout."

It was the wheat cutting time or, as the white people call it, August. The Acomas, my people's tribe, were down at the little irrigated valley, assisting each other to cut the wheat by hand. These wheat fields were small, and had been laboriously pla...

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Title: Traditional Apache Life

Author(s): Southwest Crossroads Spotlight

An overview of some important events and themes in the lives of Apaches.

The Athapaskan peoples migrated south from Alaska and Canada and eventually split into seven distinct groups. By 1500, they occupied a vast expanse of territory in the American Southwest. The extreme environments they inhabited—mountains, deserts, ...

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